“And it’s something he wants to do, but unfortunately he doesn’t have the manpower to launch it immediately,” he added.
As of Friday, the DPA has investigated at least three separate shootings in hotels or motels.
One of these shootings was declared homicide. The other two left victims in critical condition.
However, according to Gallegos, one of the victims in critical condition is not expected to survive.
According to Vaidya, the city’s crime rate could have a negative impact on people coming to visit.
“It has escalated, and I’ve been trying to preach this to our leaders for years now,” he said.
“The perception that Albuquerque has initiated across the country is that it’s not a safe place to come and visit or even just spend the night,” Vaidya added.
Gallegos did not respond to KOB’s request for an interview with DPA officials.
However, Medina previously mentioned an increase in drug trafficking as the reason for the spike in homicides. Gallegos also mentioned that the city is launching other initiatives to fight crime.
Albuquerque Mayor Tim Keller previously announced plans to kick off the post-COVID recovery of the city’s tourism industry by allocating $ 1.5 million to the tourism industry.
Vaidya says some of that money should be used to secure local hotels and motels.
“We asked for it,” Vaidya said.
“We actually said there was a 1% tax in Albuquerque levied specifically on hotels and said we can take some of that or even increase it to 1 ½, maybe 2% and use this money specifically for accommodation establishments so that we have a safer environment and that we can have a better reputation all over the country. ”
In total, there were 35 homicides in 2021, almost twice as many as the city had had at this point in the previous two years.